Breakout ‘Bullet Train’ star Andrew Koji finds the plus side of ‘Snake Eyes’ flop

Andrew Koji
Photo by Christopher Jue/Getty Images for Paramount Pictures

You might be just finding out about breakout Bullet Train star Andrew Koji, but that doesn’t mean that hardworking actor hasn’t been on the fringes of wide stardom for a while now. In fact, he had a starring role in a movie that flopped so hard it killed the reboot attempt of the G.I. Joe franchise.

The 34-year-old actor, who admits the script for Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins was “awful,” told Entertainment Weekly that even though the film bombed (it made less than half of its $80 million budget and much less than the estimated $160 million it needed to break even), he learned a lot from the experience.

“What I hear is that it’s important to get on your feature-film thing as soon as possible. As soon as you get the thing, you do that because then you’re on some sort of list or you’ve got some pre-studio deal or something like that. So that was part of it. I did actually like Robert [Schwentke], the director. He’s definitely more of an actor’s director than a franchise or IP one. And I guess it did lead to Bullet Train, which then also led to the film I did with John Malkovich [Seneca – On the Creation of Earthquakes]. And then, I got the independent film I did after that.”

Koji is, of course, experiencing a surge in his career thanks to Bullet Train. However, the actor shared how he stays grounded with everything going on around him, including meditation, as the actor says he’s worked with “a few difficult people” so far in Hollywood, and he knows the importance of remembering how small you are in the big picture.

“Aside from the meditation and the self-work that I do pretty much daily, I feel like if you really… This is what I’m going to say, because I’ve worked with a few difficult people in my last few films: I think it’s a choice. I think they’ve made a choice to believe in this. Obviously, if you get super, super famous, life would be different and hard. But I think it’s just knowing that you’re not that important, really. I don’t know. I’ve got this quote. This is something that I learned recently, which put everything into perspective for me. I’ll recite this for you now off the top of my head. It’s something I repeat to myself every day and I thought maybe this is what I’m going through now to remind myself that I’m just a human being and we’re just a tiny part in this whole piece.”

He keeps this mentality and puts it into perspective against the reality of the physical world.

“Compared to the massive movements of heaven and earth, compared to the immensity of geologic time, the greatest acts of humanity and the monuments are beneath significance. In our egotism and our view of ourselves as the center of the universe, we imagine that our lives have some meaning and importance and place beside the stars and the mountains and the rivers. They do not. We cannot hope for any true meaning in the history of the universe, but we can know it better and we can be a better part of it.”

Bullet Train is showing now in theaters.